Nanotechnology Spotlight – Latest Articles

RSS Subscribe to our Nanotechnology Spotlight feed

Showing Spotlights 9 - 16 of 2511 in category All (newest first):


Novel cellulose aerogel radiative coolers for building applications

aerogelThe development of efficient cooling technology based on environmentally friendly and biobased materials is crucial to many day-to-day activities. A novel, highly efficient cellulose nanocrystal aerogel radiative cooler acts as a dual-function thermal insulator and daytime passive radiant cooler. These aerogel coolers can save on average more than 35% in cooling energy consumption and they are capable of achieving a nearly 9 degree C drop under direct sunlight, they even work effectively in hot, moist, and fickle extreme surroundings.

Jun 16th, 2022

Researchers develop 'attacking' droplets as a step towards biomimetic nanosystems (w/video)

kissing-dropletsOne of the key goals of nanochemistry is to develop artificial systems that imitate biological processes, particularly aiming at replicating the basic behavior of life forms. In this field, the interaction between droplets is gaining increasing attention as model systems to approach the dynamic behaviors of living cells, which have evolved to harvest energy from their environments to drive the chemical processes that enable life. The development of these 'droplet frameworks' is an essential tool to understand, explain and eventually replicate Nature's processes during the early steps in the origin of life on Earth. Researchers have now demonstrated that basic features found in many living cell types can emerge from a simple two-droplet framework.

Jun 10th, 2022

Realization of 'silicon-like' doping in organic semiconductors

stacked-semiconductorOrganic semiconductors (OSCs) are a class of semiconductor materials consisting of conjugated molecules or polymers. Compared to inorganic semiconductors, OSCs have distinctive advantages including being solution-processable, suitable for low-cost and large-area fabrication of electronics, and applicable to flexible/stretchable electronics, among others. Given the importance of doping techniques for semiconductors, it is highly attractive to establish doping methodologies for OSCs similar to that for silicon. This would simplify the difficulty and cost of synthesizing different types of OSCs for various applications, as well as lead to interesting structures such as organic PN homojunctions.

Jun 9th, 2022

Emerging 4D printing technologies for biomedical applications

3D-printed-structureAlthough 4D printing is considered very promising for various biomedical applications - such as tissue scaffolds, neural scaffolds, grafts and stents, cardiac patches and valves, even bionic constructs - its broad-scale adoption for clinical use and tissue engineering purposes is complicated by a notable limitation of printable smart materials and the simplistic nature of achievable responses possible with current sources of stimulation. Nevertheless, 4D printing may offer a more favorable fabrication approach over 3D printing, as 4D constructs can respond to internal and/or external stimuli.

Jun 7th, 2022

'Self-aware' and self-powered metamaterial implants

3D-printed-structureResearchers propose a first-of-a-kind smart orthopedic implant with both diagnostic and energy harvesting capabilities. This mechanically tunable, multifunctional metamaterial implant can sense and harvest energy from body motions. These implants only use their constituent components to achieve these advanced functionalities - they don't require any external power source or bulky electronics. Furthermore, the implants can be 3D printed and customized for each patient based on the clinical requirements and anatomical matching.

Jun 3rd, 2022

High-performance graphene nanomesh filtration membranes inspired by cell walls

nanofiltrationGraphene-based membranes have attracted considerable attention as promising candidates for new filtration technologies for filtering out nanoparticles, organic molecules, and even small inorganic salt ions. Putting a nature-inspired spin on the fabrication of high-performance graphene membranes for tricky oil/water separations - even in stable emulsions - researchers have demonstrated a graphene nanomesh membrane that possessed high hydrophilicity, super-oleophobicity and low oil adhesion underwater.

May 31st, 2022

Nanomaterial-enabled bacteriophage therapy for wound infections

bacteriaOne interesting alternative to traditional antibiotics is phage therapy. Bacteriophages are viruses that selectively target and solely kill bacteria, even multi-drug resistant ones. However, scientists don't yet have the full picture of how it works and what the potential risks are. In view of these challenges, researchers have considered an alternative approach where phages are destroyed immediately after use, thus controlling dosage and circumventing undesirable consequences while maintaining the advantages of whole phage as antibacterial delivery vehicle.

May 30th, 2022

A new member in flatland - MBenes awaiting successful synthesis

MBenesDecades of research on transition metal borides (TMBs) and their phases have led to a novel class of 2D transition metal borides termed MBenes - the boron-analogues of MXenes. Due to the very early stage of development, little is known about MBenes' physical and chemical properties, although excellent mechanical, electronic, metallic/semiconducting, capacitive, and thermoelectric properties have been theoretically predicted for them. However, even the most accurate theoretical predictions and optimistic predictions demonstrating MBenes' outstanding physical properties cannot be realized if researchers are not able to experimentally synthesize them - something the research community still is waiting for.

May 26th, 2022